Immigration Thwarts Attempt To Traffic Three Nigerians For Prostitution

A file photo of the head office of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) in Abuja. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

 

Operatives of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) at Seme Border Control Post have apprehended three suspected human traffickers and three victims en route to Ghana.

The Service Public Relations Officer, Sunday James, disclosed this in a statement forwarded to Channels Television on Tuesday.

According to him, the Comptroller of NIS in charge of the Seme Control Post, Olushola Ajisafe, confirmed the status of the victims as being trafficked after a thorough investigation.

James noted that Olushola, who was the former Comptroller in Katsina, had during his duty tour arrested several human traffickers and their victims in the state.

“The victims were deceitfully persuaded to embark on the trip for a job, but on being interrogated they were discovered to be victims of trafficking for the purpose of prostitution.

“The human trafficking illicit business has been on the increase under the various guise, but they have always been discovered by the officials through timely intelligence and operational synergy between officers along the national borders and airports leading to the arrests,” the statement said.

The Comptroller General of NIS, Muhammad Babandede, therefore, cautioned parents to keep eyes on their children, especially teenagers.

This group of people, according to him, are prone to fall victim to the deceitful acts and ways that make them believe the tricks of traffickers who may be close family members, friends and even sources on the internet connecting them to such criminal elements.

Babandede also advised parents to embark on proper guidance and counselling to prevent their children from becoming victims of trafficking.

Nigerian ‘Sex Slavery’ Ring Goes On Trial In France

Man Bags 15 Years In Prison For N5.2m Fraud

 

 

Twenty-four suspected members of a sex trafficking ring accused of forcing Nigerian women into prostitution in France go on trial Wednesday, the latest case to highlight the growing use of Nigerian migrants as sex slaves in Europe.

Nigeria was the main country of origin of the migrants arriving across the Mediterranean to Italy in 2016 and 2017, though their numbers have since dropped.

Many of the arrivals were women and girls lured to Europe with false promises of jobs as hairdressers or seamstresses, only to find themselves selling sex on arrival to repay their debts.

Nigerians now outnumber Chinese or Eastern European sex workers on the streets of France and some other European countries.

Last year, 15 members of a Paris-based female-led pimping ring known as the “Authentic Sisters” were sentenced to up to 11 years in prison for forcing girls into sex slavery in France.

Many were themselves former trafficking victims-turned-perpetrators.

READ ALSO: Modern Slavery: Kaduna Govt Unites 140 Victims With Families

Similar gangs have also been dismantled in Italy and Britain.

The investigation in Lyon, where police estimate half the city’s sex workers are Nigerian, began after authorities received a tip about a Nigerian pastor accused of exploiting several sex workers who lived in apartments he owned.

The pastor, Stanley Omoregie, has denied the charges, which include aggravated pimping and slavery.

But in the transcript of a conversation submitted to the court, he is heard saying he wanted “those with beautiful bodies, who can be controlled, not those that cause problems.”

The prosecution has presented him as the kingpin of a family-based syndicate made up of 10 women and 14 men, including one of Europe’s most wanted women, Jessica Edosomwan, accused of recruiting destitute women in Nigeria for the sex trade in Lyon, Nimes and Montpellier.

Edosomwan, who is believed to be on the run in the Benelux countries, Italy or Germany, will be tried in absentia.

From prostitution to pimping

The UN has estimated that 80 percent of young Nigerian women arriving in Italy — their first port of call in Europe — are already in the clutches of prostitution networks, or quickly fall under their control.

The accused in Lyon cover the entire gamut of sex trafficking activities, from iron-fisted “madams” and violent pimps as well as drivers of the vans in which the women perform sexual acts, and those tasked with laundering the proceeds of the trafficking.

Prosecutors estimate that 17 alleged victims, aged 17 to 38, made up to 150,000 euros ($166,000) a month for the syndicate, selling sex for as little as 10 euros.

Most of the women come from Benin City, capital of Nigeria’s southern Edo State, a human trafficking hotbed with a long history of dispatching women and men to Europe to earn money to send back home.

Many told investigators they had taken part in “juju” or black magic rituals before leaving Nigeria, during which they promised to repay the money they owed for their passage to Europe.

Many of the woman took the perilous migrant trail across the Sahara Desert to Libya and then across the Mediterranean to Italy before winding up in Lyon.

Among the accused is a 28-year-old former prostitute who was herself released from sex slavery after paying off her debts and who in turn brought over another young woman from Nigeria.

Months of police wiretaps and surveillance led to the arrest of the suspects between September 2017 and January 2018.

They risk 10 years in jail if convicted.

Women Protest In Abuja Over Sexual Assaults By Police Personnel

 Protesters march through streets of Abuja in protest against alleged sexual assaults on Friday, May 10, 2019. PHOTO: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV
Protesters march through the streets of Abuja in protest over alleged sexual assaults by police on Friday, May 10, 2019. PHOTO: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV

 

Hundreds of protesters marched through the Nigerian capital Abuja on Friday demanding an end to police impunity after officers were accused of carrying out a string of sexual assaults.

“Being a woman is not a crime,” protesters chanted during the march, which was organised by several women’s rights groups and civil society organisations.

“My body, my life,” they added.

Dozens of women were dragged out of nightclubs, hotels and bars in Abuja last month in police raids, and then arrested for prostitution — a charge many furiously denied.

Testimonies from women given to AFP provide shocking stories of multiple and brutal sexual assaults carried out by police officers after their arrest.

 

Protesters march through the streets of Abuja in protest over alleged sexual assaults by police on Friday, May 10, 2019. PHOTO: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV

 

The sweeping police crackdown in the federal capital sparked outrage in the news and on social media in Africa’s most populous nation.

“In Abuja women were raped, robbed and humiliated just because they are women,” Amnesty International said Friday. “Those responsible of these violations must be brought to justice.”

Last week a presidential spokesman said that “a thorough investigation of what happened” was being carried out.

“This administration will not tolerate any violation of the individual freedoms of our people,” the spokesman added.

But protesters on Friday said they were skeptical such promises will be followed through and pointed out that more women have been arrested.

 

Protesters march through the streets of Abuja in protest over alleged sexual assaults by police on Friday, May 10, 2019. PHOTO: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV

 

“We are asking for them to stop the raids on women,” said the lawyer for several of the women arrested, Jennifer Ogbogu, who joined the march.

Ogbogu said five women were arrested on Thursday night.

They were reportedly grabbed off the street — including while riding motorcycles or out shopping — and “accused of prostitution”, she said.

Prostitution is illegal in Nigeria.

AFP

See more photos below…

 

Spanish, Finnish Police Break Up Nigerian Prostitution Ring

file photo

Spanish and Finnish police, with the help of European law agencies, have arrested 24 members of a suspected prostitution ring preying on young Nigerian women, Europol said Thursday.

“The victims, mainly vulnerable young Nigerian women, were recruited in Nigeria and trafficked to Spain via Italy,” Europe’s Hague-based policing agency said.

“Once in Spain they were forced into prostitution, mostly in the cities of Benidorm and Malaga, but also Madrid, Barcelona, Soria and Gandia (Valencia),” Europol said in a statement.

Spanish police arrested the gang members in several Spanish cities, but its leader was taken into custody in Helsinki, where “she was arrested by the police, thanks to effective international cooperation.”

The probe was started when authorities were alerted that two Nigerian women who were seeking asylum could be victims of human trafficking, Europol said.

“Investigations revealed the existence of an organised crime group operating in Spain that had a big infrastructure in Nigeria, as well as links in Niger, Libya and Italy.”

The women were smuggled to Spain where they were told to seek international protection and asylum “so that they could work for the criminal organisation without problems in the event of being identified by the police,” Europol said.

The group provided the victims with fraudulent documents to request asylum, it added.

Spanish police earlier this month busted another network that was forcing transsexuals into prostitution, after luring most of them to Spain from Venezuela.

Nigerian Union Flags Off Anti-Drug Campaign In South Africa

nigerian-union-sa-campaign, South Africa The Nigerian Union in South Africa has kick started a campaign against drugs and prostitution, in line with the country’s efforts to eradicate the problems.

The group says this has become imperative, as there are many law abiding Nigerians in the country.

Many people in South Africa associate drug-related crimes in their country with Nigerians, but the Nigerian Union says that perception has to change.

Our Johannesburg Bureau Chief, Betty Dibiah was at the event in the Northern Cape.

We Are Making Impact, Not Winning War Against Trafficking – NAPTIP

The Executive Secretary of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons and other Related Matters (NAPTIP), Beatrice Jeddy-Agba has revealed that Nigeria has been regarded as the “source, transit and destination country for various forms of trafficking”.

Ms Agba, who acknowledged that Nigeria has “a huge trafficking problem”,  said some cultural practices in the country have not helped the situation.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s programme, Question Time, Ms Agba said that NAPTIP is making impact in curbing the menace of trafficking, however the agency is not winning the battle yet.

She also speaks about the agency’s effort in ensuring that defaulters of the law get appropriate sentencing the court of law.

Underage Prostitution: Benzema, Ribery to face trial

Karim Benzema and Franck Ribery both French International footballers are to face trial for the alleged solicitation of an underage as sex companion.

The two French players are amongst the eight people being investigated by magistrate Dando Andre after which he decided to send the Real Madrid and Bayern Munich players for trial.

Also under investigation and trial is the Zaman Cafe on Paris’ Champs Elysees where the meetings with the under aged Zahia Dehar took place and the other defendants according to Judicial sources will be prosecuted for aggravated pimping.

Paris prosecutors had in 2011 requested that the case against the two French football stars be dropped on the grounds that they did not know that Dehar was under 18.

Dehar, now 20, told police she was paid for sex with Ribery in 2009 and Benzema in 2008 when she was aged 16. She claimed that both players were not aware that she was under age.

The affair came to light during 2010 and tarnished the image of the France football team just weeks ahead of the World Cup in South Africa.

Ribery, 29, plays for Bundesliga club Bayern Munich and 24-year-old Benzema with Primera Liga giants Real Madrid.

Both face a possible three years in prison or a 45,000 euro fine.

Ribery and Benzema have been named in France coach Didier Deschamps’ squad for the friendly game against Uruguay in the northern city of Le Havre on Wednesday.

But Deschamps refused to comment on the situation, calling it “a delicate subject”.